Republic of Saint Mark presents an historical episode from the
fifteenth century recalling the donation of the island of Cyprus to Venice.
Such a donation was possible in 1489, when Caterina Cornaro, a Venetian noblewoman
and queen of the island, was acclaimed with great honours back in her homeland;
thus she conferred upon it dominion over Cyprus.
The Venetian pageant shows the political and administrative' organization of the mercantile oligarchy, which held the fate of the state; and so the Doge, the Senators, the Ambassadors and the Capitano de Mar, the fleet commander, parade in the procession.
The first part of the pageant, lead by nobles, drummers and trumpeters, shows the "Standard of Saint Mark", donated to Venice in 1171 by Pope Alexander III sa a sign of gratitude for acting sa an arbiter of peace between the papacy, the empire and the city-states.
historical parade evokes the Ligurian republic's consular age, before the
doges and its transformation into a sort of aristocratic and mercantile monarchy.
Central to the parade's theme is GuglielmoEmbriaco, called Testa di maglio
(Mallet Head); as a Genoese commander, he led the republic's ships on the
siege of Jerusalem during the First Crusade, and returned to Genoa with the
Sacred Basin, which, according to tradition, was used by Jesus and the Apostles
during the Last Supper.
Next, representatives of the Genoese social classes from the city-state period are shown: the merchants, the soldiers, and the people. Finally, another important figure is Caffaro of Caschifellone, the analyst who, recalling Embriaco's feats, relates this hero's remarkable gifts for military strategy and invention of war machines, which were used to storm the Holy City.
Pisa's historical parade shows several salient moments in the city's history. The oldest moment is certainly represented by Kinzica de' Sismondi, the Pisan heroine who, in 1004, saved her homeland from a sudden attack by the Saracens.
The various evolutionary phases of the Pisan city-state are then shown, from the consuls to the Podesta to the Captain of the people. People in arms are also part of the pageant, carrying the Germanic symbol of the black eagle in a golden background, as well as sailors, buglers, and drummers.
Amalfitan historical pageant, conceived by scenographer, Roberto Scielzo,
represents Amalfian society in the First millennium roughly, when the Campanian
Maritime Republic had reached its apex. The costumes, using an Arab.-Byzantine
motif, are made from the prestigious silks, linen, brocades and damasks-all
esteemed in the Eastem Empire.
Representatives of the various social classes are also present in the parade: the magistrates, among them the duke, the judges, the palace count, and the consuls; the military, with the knights of the ducal court, the knights of Saint John of Jerusalem, and the archers; the people, the sailors and the rowers.
The central theme of the parade is the marriage of the Duke's son to a noble woman, daughter of a Dynast, or prestigious aristocrat, from a nearby Lombardian principality. This wedding came to sanction the legal age of maturity (18 years) fin Amalfian offspring and its involvement in political power.
The knights of Saint John of Jerusalem, whose costume became a national postage stamp, evoke Brother Gerardo Sasso of Scala, the founder of the sovereign military order, which later became Rhodes and then Malta.